Introduction to Cables
You’re ready to learn how to cable! Yay! I’m so excited.
Cabling is simply making your knitted stitches travel, twist around, and cross each other to make gorgeous, textured designs.
We’re going to be learning the technique of cabling (and so much more), while creating a pair of beautiful leg warmers to wear or give as gifts this winter.
This is really an intermediate knitting course in disguise. While making these leg warmers, I’m going to teach you a large set of techniques designed to propel you towards Knitting Superstardom, without you even realizing it.
These leg warmers are the perfect project to learn a whole new set of skills.
What We’ll Be Covering In This Course
First, you’ll learn to read from a cable chart, instead of a written pattern.
Then, I’ll teach you how to cable with and without a cable needle.
You’ll cover four different types of cables in this project, ensuring that you’ll be able to interpret and correctly execute any kind of cable pattern.
As you knit, I’ll show you how to make buttonholes, as well as troubleshooting any mistakes you may make as you knit.
I’ll then show you how to bind off in pattern, and a really fast way to make a twisted-cord tie to top off the whole project.
If you need a refresher on some of the basic skills required for this project, such as checking your gauge, casting on, knitting, purling, blocking, and weaving in ends, please refer to your Video Knitting Dictionary.
Pattern: Bulky Cabled Legwarmers with Buttons
First and foremost, you’ll need a pattern.
Download the Bulky Cabled Legwarmers with Buttons Pattern here
Selecting Your Materials
For this project, you’ll need 250 yards of super-bulky yarn. If you are shopping at a craft or chain store, you can use 3 balls of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick.
I recommend getting a light and/or solid-colored yarn. Not only will you be able to more easily see what you are doing, but the cable design will stand out much better in the finished project.
You’ll also need a pair of straight needles in US size 15 (10 mm).
Eight buttons, 1 inch in diameter.
Wooden buttons from your LYS are relatively inexpensive, as are variety packs of basic buttons from craft stores like Joann Fabrics.
Cable needles are optional, because I will be teaching you how to cable without one, but if you are brand new to cabling, I recommend you try the traditional way first (using a cable needle).
You can buy a set of cable needles or, alternatively, double-pointed needles (DPNs) in size 15 from your LYS. I like using DPNs as cable needles, and that is what I will be using in this tutorial.
A good challenge would be to knit the first leg warmer using a cable needle to help you, and knit the second leg warmer without.
That way, you’ll have a solid understanding of what you are doing before you try the fancy way.
Why cable without a cable needle, you ask? It’s faster, less cumbersome, and you have to buy less stuff. Which is a lot of what being a Knitting Superstar is all about.
And because being a Knitting Superstar is also about being bold, I will be demonstrating both techniques as we go, so that, if you ARE ready to jump in, you can do so.
Other notions: You’ll also need:
– A tapestry needle
– Some Soak or other wool-wash with which to block your leg warmers (available at your LYS).
Check Your Gauge
Using your super-bulky yarn and needles, cast on 20 stitches and knit in Stockinette stitch for 2-3 inches.
Make sure that your gauge measures 2.5 sts/in in Stockinette stitch.
Need a review? How to Check Your Gauge
Pattern Overview/Walkthrough of This Project
In this video, I’ll walk you through the basic pattern, step-by-step, so that you know what to expect, and also so that you begin to get a feel for looking at a cable chart.